Vampire Crab Care?

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platypuskid2
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Vampire Crab Care?

Post by platypuskid2 » Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:47 pm

After losing Lunar, my Halloween moon crab, the terrarium half of my vivarium is vacant. I'm interesting in getting a new resident crab and after careful research the only fitting freshwater crab that'd enjoy a semi aquatic lifestyle would be a Vampire crab. Does anyone have any advice for me in taking in a few little vampires of my own?


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Orin
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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by Orin » Sun Aug 13, 2017 6:22 am

I have some captive bred vampires that would make a good pet but the wild-caught often don't live terribly long. I would suggest a patriot crab if you want something that's hardy and long-lived. Patriot crabs will molt, grow, and live for a decade in fresh water.

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Orin
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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by Orin » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:19 pm

platypuskid2 did you decide on a crab? I put together a hobbyist book mostly about breeding vampire crabs. It's a print on demand with zero copies sold so far in the USA (it's on amazon) but I put a lot of work into it and I think it would be great reading if you're still researching crabs you might try.Image

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aussieJJDude
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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by aussieJJDude » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:22 pm

I had no idea that you put a book together. I'll wonder once amazon finally opens up in Aus, if this will be available. Be very interested in purchasing one as a good 'light' reading source.

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Orin
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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by Orin » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:52 pm

I thought amazon sold books in Australia? If you'll never have a chance here's a couple paragraphs that also happen to follow the title of this thread (this is from my file before the galley edits and revisions):
"Specific Housing:
For the half dozen or so commonly available species, the enclosure requirements seem to be uniform. These small crabs are easy to house since they drink only fresh water, and do not require a clean, well-oxygenated source. Adults can survive for months or longer with a few millimeters water depth. A two and a half gallon to ten gallon (9-38 liter) glass terrarium makes a good enclosure. I prefer to use no lids because stagnant, high moisture can kill them within days. A covered, decorated terrarium with small fountains or streams (powered by small water pumps or air pumps) and open space is an alternative habitat design to keep the oxygen levels adequate. They are not very destructive and rarely eat plant materials other than certain cut fruit and vegetables. They are predatory and cannot be housed with other small creatures, even tiny springtails can be caught by adults from time to time (small crabs eat springtails with reckless abandon). Hiding areas or deep substrate should be avoided or they remain permanently out of view. Too many hiding areas make it difficult to gauge if they are feeding, need food, have had young, molted, or are long dead. The cage should have water and land areas that are easily accessed with a scaleable, sloping ramp. They cannot climb smooth surfaces which is the reason a lid is unnecessary to contain them. The adults can usually access a shallow dish (such as the lid of a 1 oz. cup) but the young are too small. This genus is considered terrestrial and larger specimens are capable of molting on land but they prefer to molt under water. A paludarium is suggested for this species. One option is to cut pieces of 2" (5 cm) thick sponge and keep the water level below the top of the sponge. The size and shape of the water areas is easily adjusted to individual preferences. Adults tend to stay on top of the sponge while young crabs are often on the sides just below the water line if there is plant cover. A thin layer of dirt can be placed on the sponge. Various mosses, including aquatic Java moss that can also grow on land, and liverworts can be grown on top to hold back the dirt and provide decoration.
Temperature and humidity requirements are somewhat controversial. 85º F (29º C) is often recommended as optimum, but I have reared numerous adults from hatchlings and successfully produced young in the low 70s without any molting or developmental problems. Development of my first pair of captive reared Geosesarma sp. "orchid" was still rapid at room temperature, less than five months (McMonigle 2011), though they were already the size of a bb pellet. Later generations took somewhere in the range of ten to twelve months to reach full adult coloration at an average of 72º F (22º C). Disco vampires progressed from dispersal to sexual maturity in 7.5 months at approximately 72º F (22º C), but they mated before obtaining full coloration. A temperature of 68º F (20º C) can result in the death of very young immature crabs over time though it does not bother large immatures or adults. Much lower temperatures are likely deadly to all stages. High humidity is a common recommendation that caused the death of most of my first Geosesarma. A terrarium without adequate air movement can suffocate the crabs within a few days or less if the lid has only very tiny air holes. Mechanical movement of air or water within the enclosure should still allow for gas exchange with the ambient atmosphere even if the lid is mostly sealed. I have always used an open-top container since the accidental death of some captive hatched immatures in 2010 caused by limited ventilation. Measured humidity should be immaterial if there is a water feature in the enclosure.
Feeding: Any small terrestrial or aquatic creature that moves to attract attention works well (springtails, roaches, isopods, daphnia, ghost shrimp, mosquito larvae, tubifex worms, black worms, etc.). Small crickets and mealworms are a great treat for older specimens. Fruit flies can be caught quickly, but run up the sides so rapidly that most escape. The primary diet does not have to consist of live prey. They can be raised from hatching to adult on fish food pellets (those made primarily from fish and shrimp meal) and small pieces of processed fish (imitation crab). They will feed on a wide variety of animal and vegetable matter, but are primarily predatory and hunt by sight. Small pieces of food tossed in to the cage often elicit a response, but active prey is better. They show limited interest in fruits and vegetables unless very hungry."

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aussieJJDude
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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by aussieJJDude » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:02 am

That was a interesting read! Amazing how their care can be easily adapted to Coenobita sp.

That's probably the case, however since most of the amazon products dont ship to AU, i just assumed the same for all... ill have a look into it. :)

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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by soilentgringa » Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:10 am

They're so lovely; the halloween and vampire crabs. I wish I had room for more tanks but we just can't do any more pets right now.

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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by wodesorel » Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:47 pm

I would love to as well, my local pet shop has had them in the past and they are incredible looking. For some reason though I cannot keep freshwater inverts. Salt and brackish do wonderful, but anything with straight fresh kicks it in a few weeks.

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Re: Vampire Crab Care?

Post by hopefullcrabber » Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:51 am

Orin wrote:platypuskid2 did you decide on a crab? I put together a hobbyist book mostly about breeding vampire crabs. It's a print on demand with zero copies sold so far in the USA (it's on amazon) but I put a lot of work into it and I think it would be great reading if you're still researching crabs you might try.Image
Just purchased it recently and I highly recommend it. It covers various facets of crab biology and also covers many terrestrial, freshwater and marine species.

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